Statistics in sports show that failure is part of the game. Even baseball hitters who are having a good season are making more outs than hits. A winning or undefeated record is difficult to come by.
One coach observed that his team couldn’t win at home or away. He said the problem was they couldn’t find any where else to play.
When an athlete is undefeated, it is very noteworthy. Recently, Eli Hutchinson finished his Alaska high school wrestling career undefeated. His sister, Michaela, achieved a milestone as the first female state champion in a wrestling tournament for boys.
Her championship is also a first for the nation. These victories are worth celebrating because they cost a lot of hard work.
The athletes for the Arctic Winter Games will soon show up on the Kenai Peninsula. Many will compete, but only a few will win medals. However, because of their participation in a unique sporting event, they will all be winners.
Failure is very much a human characteristic. More often than we like, things don’t work out the way we want. Rather than give up, we just need to keep on going.
A different perspective on failure is presented by motivational authors. They advise focusing on failure so that lessons can be learned from mistakes. They encourage changing “if only” to “next time.”
One statement challenged, “If at first you do succeed, try something harder.” That is better than one that said, “If at first you don’t succeed, destroy all evidence that you’ve tried.” Another writer even went so far as to advise doubling your rate of failure. This is to foster activity and to learn from mistakes.
Activity without a purpose is like an octopus on ice skates, lots of activity but little progress. There should be a purpose for the action.
Fortunately, our service for God need not fall into the area of failure, at least not finally or fatally. This is because God doesn’t fail, and wants to make us victorious in living for him. According to the Bible, God’s mercy and compassion do not fail. Every morning there is a new supply.
After a beautiful description of love in I Corinthians 13, the writer penned, “Love never fails.”
This is the reason God interacts with us on the basis of love. “God so loved the world that he gave,” Jesus said in John 3:16.
Paul wrote in Romans 5:8 that Christ died for sinful mankind, and in doing so, he proved or demonstrated his love for us. This love can lift us above failure.
We respond with our love for God, which helps us rise above mistakes and continue on.
In the Old Testament, both the tabernacle and the temple were dwelling places for God among his people.
Now, God’s plan is for us to receive his spirit within, to become a living temple of his spirit. More than a sensational thrill, the indwelling spirit of God provides comfort, instruction, guidance, help, power, peace, joy and many other benefits.
This is so we can rise above faults of our flesh and enjoy the fruit of the spirit. Receive the spirit within and enjoy God’s plan for personal victory.
Mitch Glover is pastor at the Sterling United Pentecostal Church on Swanson River Road.
Sunday services are at 10 and 11 a.m.; Thursday Bible study and children’s church is at 7 p.m.
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